Carrot trade day to display more than 40 varieties

More than 40 carrot varieties will be on display at this year's Carrot Variety Demonstration & Trade Exhibition - even though the trials were nearly ruined by bad weather.

Varieties from some six seed companies - including Elsoms, Nickerson, Clause Tezier, Seminis, Nunhems and Rijk Zwaan - were drilled on 12 May in preparation for the event on 9 October.

However, MH Poskitt managing director Guy Poskitt, who is this year hosting the event with Richard Dixon of J Dixon & Son, had trouble establishing the crops when a severe gale caused soil to blow.

British Carrot Growers' Association (BCGA) representative John Birkenshaw said: "This reduced the plant population but subsequent intermittent rain and sun has encouraged strong crop growth."

As well as new varieties, information on how carrot and parsnip growers can lobby MEPs against current European pesticide proposals will be provided at the event.

BCGA chairman Martin Evans told Grower: "The pesticide review could result in the loss of all pesticides approved for use in UK carrot production, adding to costs."

He added that if the chemicals are lost, it could prompt many carrot growers in the UK and the rest of Europe to close down because of rising production costs. He said: "The reality is that it will cost us 35 per cent more to produce carrots without pesticides."

- The Carrot Variety Demonstration & Trade Exhibition is held at Whitley Bridge, North Yorkshire. Call 01353 659401 for details.


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